Kalena Bovell is an American conductor. Bovell is of both African-American and Hispanic heritage. She is currently Assistant Conductor of the Memphis Symphony Orchestra.
Bovell grew up in Los Angeles after moving there from Panama. Her parents immigrated from Central America and worked hard to support their family. She first found out about classical music when she was eleven and her first "private lesson" occurred when she was 18. Bovell played the violin. She discovered her love of conducting at Chapman University which she graduated from in 2009. She attended graduate school at The Hartt School.
Bovell has worked as the Orchestra Director at the Loomis Chaffee School and in 2015 staged the Swan Princess, an adaptation of Swan Lake by Tchaikovsky.
In 2017, the Chicago Tribune wrote that her skill at conducting Slavonic Dances: Opus 46 No. 2 and Opus 72 No. 7 by Antonín Dvořák was "brilliant."
Bovell became the assistant conductor for the Memphis Symphony Orchestra in 2019.
Currently, Bovell is the only African-American and Hispanic conductor in the United States.